The broad strategic objectives of the Trade programme are to provide strategic leadership in development and implementation of Trade and Private Sector related policy research and advocacy; and ensure linkages and synergy with the Debt, Aid and Economic Governance Portfolios, partners and international policy agenda in line with 2012 – 2015 AFRODAD Strategic Plan. The World Trade Organisation (WTO), held its 9th Ministerial conference in Bali, Indonesia in December 2013 that concluded with the Bali Package. The Bali Package contains a raft of agreements on 3 issues namely: trade facilitation, agriculture, and LDCs package. AFRODAD will take a leading role in unpacking the Bali Package, looking at opportunities and risks and the way forward for Africa in light of the remaining Doha Development Agenda issues.
AFRODAD will also work on researches on the direction being taken by regional integration efforts by the various African regional groupings such as COMESA, EAC and SADC on one hand and ECOWAS, ECCAS, CEN-SAD and AMU on the other hand. The Tripartite initiatives are expected to result in the Continental Free Trade Area earmarked for 2017, even though there are challenges within the Tripartite negotiations conducted to date. AFRODAD will also in the short term run programmes capacity building on trade issues to various stakeholders.